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Blacksburg Minors Win Virginia State Championship

07/29/2011, 3:51am EDT
By Admin

Bruins win 18-0 in Via Slaughter Rule

The Blacksburg Minors won the Virginia State Dixie Championship on Thursday, beating Botetourt 18-0 in three innings via the 15 run slaughter rule.  Blacksburg was clearly the more rested and prepared team, as Botetourt appeared out of gas and made uncharacteristic errors.  After six straight days of baseball in the area's intense heat, and teams running out of pitching, overall play suffered for some teams as the tournament progressed.    

As the visiting team (determined by coin flip), Blacksburg wasted little time in putting runs on the board, scoring six runs in the top of the 1st...All with two outs.  With one out, Ben Freel was HBP to get things started.  Cole Epperley then drew a walk to put runners at 1st and 2nd.  After a 2nd out, Davis Roberson walked to load the bases.  Jacob Lucas then hit a RBI single to put the first run on the board.  Grant Johnston was HBP and then Craig Weaver hit a FC that got by the SS. After a throwing error by a second Cavalier, all the bases were clear and Blacksburg was up 5-0. Weaver would advance on a passed ball, and the score on a wild pitch, to put Blacksburg up 6-0 after one half inning.

In the bottom of the 1st, starting pitcher Grant Johnston struck out the first batter.  After a walk and a hit to put runners at 1st and 2nd, Johnston quickly ended the threat by striking out the next two Botetourt batters.  

In the top of the 2nd, Blacksburg went three up and three down.  

In the bottom of the 2nd, Johnston faced four batters, forcing three to hit into infield grounders.  The fourth batter was HBP.  

In the top of the 3rd inning, Blacksburg would explode for twelve runs and put the game away.  Luke Goforth led off with a single and then stole second.  Ben Freel drew a walk and Cole Epperley hit a hard single, scoring Goforth. Wesley McCoy followed with a two RBI single to score Freel and Epperley.  With McCoy on first, Davis Roberson drew a walk to put runners at 1st and 2nd.  After an out, Grant Johnston hit a single to score McCoy.  Craig Weaver then hit a single, followed by Cordell Croy reaching via an error, scoring Roberson. With bases loaded,  Luke Goforth hit a FC, but a bobbled ball enabled him to beat out the throw and Johnston to score.  Ben Freel would draw his second walk to re-load the bases.  A single by Epperley scored Weaver.  After a pitching change and bases re-loaded, Wesley McCoy and Davis Roberson drew RBI walks, scoring Croy and Goforth.  Jacob Lucas followed with a single to again re-load the bases.  A errant pick play attempt to 3B, enabled McCoy to take home for the 12th run of the inning.  The inning ended by a very nice double play by Botetourt.  

In the bottom of the 3rd inning, Cordell Croy replaced Johnston on the mound.  Croy quickly disposed of the Cavaliers by striking out the first batter, getting the 2nd to hit a ground ball to 1B McCoy, and then striking out the third batter to end the game.  

Johnston and Croy combined to throw a one hitter and faced only 12 batters.  No Botetourt player batted more than once.

Offensively, Blacksburg was led by Cole Epperley who went 2/2 with 2 singles and drew a walk, to reach base all three times he was up.  He also scored three runs and stole a base.  Jacob Lucas also had two singles, and scored two runs. Wesley McCoy's 2 RBI single broke the game wide open in the 3rd.  He also scored two runs.  Ben Freel reached base all three times he was up and scored three runs, while Luke Goforth, Davis Roberson, Grant Johnston, and Craig Weaver each scored two runs.  

With the win, the Blacksburg Minors advance to the Dixie Youth World Series and will represent the entire State of Virginia.

This will be the 2nd World Series appearance for Blacksburg Baseball; the first coming in 2007.  With the five state tournament wins, Blacksburg is 14-5  in State Tournament play and is now the 3rd winningest franchise in Virginia State Tournament history (73%) and 2nd in # of overall wins.

This year's State performance set several records, some are yet to be determined.  A few thus far:  2nd all time in runs (66....Record is 70) and tied for most runs in a game (22).  Waiting on final numbers, but Blacksburg will be at or near the top in RBI's, Hits, Stolen Bases, and Doubles...All for "tournament" and "game."   Not bad for an organization founded just eleven years ago.


State Umpire In Chief "Shorty"Ferrell


Ben Freel gets the 1st inning started after getting HBP


Wesley McCoy take the high pitch


Cole Epperley scores the games 2nd run


Team Blacksburg huddles while Botetourt calls time out


Jacob Lucas hits a RBI single


Craig Weaver about the clean off the bases


Pitching change for Botetourt


Cordell Croy almost beats out an infield grounder


Team Blacksburg after the top of the 1st


P Johnston warms up for the bottom of the 1st


"Shorty" Ferrell and Ben Freel


After one complete inning of play


Matt Freel with text book batting form


Colin Collver


Umpire talks to Johnston about dirt on the baseball


Score after two complete innings of play


Goforth stealing 2B


Goforth "SAFE"


Epperley hit drives in Goforth


Goforth scores


McCoy rounds 1B


Epperley flys home


Lucas prepares to bunt


Johnston beats out an infield grounder


Cole Epperley gets his 2nd hit of the night


Blacksburg faithful


Mgr Brad Epperley talks to his team


18-0 after two and a half innings of play


McCoy makes the 2nd to last out


Team Celebration.....World Series Bound!


Dixie National Director Tim Boggs


The Dirty Dozen


Luke Goforth


Cole Epperley


Jacob Lucas


Craig Weaver


Matt Freel


Christian Vance


Coach Tracy McCoy


Team Blacksburg Hoists State Championship Trophy


Entire State Champion Team


Luke Goforth leads off the game


Cole Epperley


Davis Roberson


Davis Roberson rounds 1st


Botetourt HC visits the mound in the top of the 1st


Grant Johnston


A happy Craig Weaver on 2B with 3 runs scored


Craig Weaver crosses the plate


After one half inning of play


Johnston throws a strike


OF Luke Goforth


C Ben Freel


Umpires get into position


Christian Vance lets the high pitch go


Colin Collver hits a line drive


Johnston to McCoy for an out


Goforth gets a hit


Goforth under the tag


Ben Freel zeros in on a pitch


Sending Goforth home


McCoy delivers a big 2 RBI hit to break the game open


Epperley on his way home


Davis Roberson hustles to first


McCoy breaks for home after a failed pick play @ 3B


Team Blacksburg during another Botetourt time out


Ben Freel comes home


Lucas and Freel wait to get in on more of the action


Lucas gets a 2nd hit


Cordell Croy pitches in relief


The last out!


Team Blacksburg lines up to listen to Dixie Officials


Davis Roberson presented with tournament HR award


State Runner-Up Botetourt


Ben Freel


Davis Roberson


Grant Johnston


Cordell Croy


Colin Collver


Mgr Brad Epperley


Coach Mike Freel


Virginia State Champions

Tag(s): 9-10 Minors